Optical Engineering • Open AccessEntrepreneur
It is an exciting time for me. I just left the U.S. federal government after 17 years of service with the Army and the Navy. I am off to start my own small business in the area of infrared systems. The name of the new company is St. John’s Optical Systems. My 17 years with the government was great. I had left a large aerospace company to go to work for the Army. In the large corporation, I was relegated to the measurement of modulation transfer function, or MTF, on a targeting pod of a fighter aircraft. No more, no less. When I wanted to do other things and help out in other areas of electro-optics, I was told to “get back to work,” as is the case with many huge programs. When I went to work for the Army, I was told to do whatever I wanted as long as I completed my required assignments. I flourished in such an open environment with a great deal of interesting projects underway. I worked hard, learned a lot, and aligned myself with those who were making a difference. I was lucky to have a good number of giants in the field as mentors.